Macron receives Zelensky at the Elysee Palace
Russia and Ukraine
The Ukrainian president’s visit to France is part of a tour of several European capitals that has resulted in new pledges of additional military support as Ukraine prepares to launch a counterattack against Russian forces.
Published in: May 14, 2023: 11:24 PM GST
Last updated: May 14, 2023: 11:53 PM GST
On Sunday evening, French President Emmanuel Macron received his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, in the Elysee, as part of a working dinner, during which they will discuss “Ukraine’s urgent needs on the military and French levels,” according to what the French presidency announced.
Zelensky had arrived Sunday evening at the Villacoublay air base in southwest Paris on an unannounced visit to France.
Prime Minister Elizabeth Born and Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna received the Ukrainian president, who later went to the presidential palace, where the two presidents will discuss “support” France “in response to Ukraine’s urgent needs on the military and humanitarian levels,” according to the Elysee.
Zelensky’s visit to France is part of a tour that included several European capitals, which resulted in new pledges to provide additional military support at a time when his country is preparing to launch a counterattack against Russian forces.
Macron’s office announced the Paris stop on Zelensky’s trip, and France has sent a plane to pick up Zelensky from Germany, where he met Chancellor Olaf Scholz earlier on Sunday.
Zelensky’s visit to Berlin
Macron’s office said the two leaders would hold dinner talks and that Macron would “reaffirm France and Europe’s unwavering support for Ukraine’s restoration of its legitimate rights and the defense of its fundamental interests”.
France has supplied Ukraine with a range of weapons, including air defense systems, light tanks, howitzers and other weapons, and fuel.
Before traveling to Paris, Zelensky discussed his country’s planned counterattack with Schulz in Berlin.
Zelensky said it would aim to liberate Russian-controlled areas within Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders, not to attack Russian territory.
The Ukrainian president is visiting allies in search of more weapons to help his country fend off Russian forces, and funds to rebuild what was destroyed by more than a year of devastating conflict.